Max Verstappen, Daniel Ricciardo showed 'respect' in Sepang duel
Horner says he was happy for drivers to fight to the finish
By James Galloway
Last Updated: 10/10/16 10:52am
Red Bull's Christian Horner says the "respect" between Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen meant he was happy to let the team-mates race to the finish in the Malaysia GP.
Ricciardo and Verstappen capitalised on Lewis Hamilton's late engine blow-out to claim Red Bull's second win of the season and the team's first one-two finish since their last world title in 2013.
This was achieved despite the team-mates earlier going wheel-to-wheel for several corners as they battled over what was second position as they met on track on different strategies.
And Horner, Red Bull's team principal, said: "What we have seen is there is a real respect between the two.
"Good hard racers and I felt comfortable letting them go head to head."
The engrossing battle between Ricciardo and Verstappen drew comparisons with the 'Multi-21' duel between Red Bull predecessors Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber at the same circuit in 2013.
However, that fight was laced with controversy and acrimony after Vettel ignored a direct order from the pitwall to hold station and instead overtook team-mate Webber for the victory.
Vettel and Webber's five-year partnership, while delivering the team huge success, produced several on-track flash points as the pair developed a frosty relationship off the track.
With Red Bull targeting a return to title contention in 2017, Ricciardo and Verstappen's fight for supremacy - and the state of relations between them - is set to prove one of the major points of intrigue of future seasons.
But, for now at least, the pair are enjoying racing against each other.
"It was hard racing and for sure we're both determined to win and we want to beat each other, but I think we did it very fair and with a lot of respect," said Sepang race winner Ricciardo. "So I thank him for that and I think it goes both ways. It was good fun."
Verstappen concurred: "We had a good fight, a fair fight, and I think it shows the respect between us."